Commenting on the referendum decision, Terry Scuoler, CEO of EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, says:
“While it is not the result many businesses wanted, it is the democratic will of our country. The Government must now move very quickly to stabilise the economy, reassure the markets and shore-up business confidence. The process of leaving the Union will take some time, and the Government should not rush to initiate Article 50 and the formal exit process, while there is so much uncertainty. Ministers must think carefully about our negotiating position while setting out a clear roadmap for establishing a new deal with the EU which remains our biggest market and trading partner.
“We need a clear vision for a new relationship between the UK and the EU, but we must also avoid throwing the baby out with the bath water. In the complex task of unpicking the UK from EU regulation and legislation, the Government must tread carefully, maintaining a trading relationship with the single market, and not becoming bogged down to the detriment of making long-awaited and much-needed decisions on projects vital to our future economic prosperity. We must also ensure that the skilled workers we need are still encouraged and enabled to live and work in the UK.”
He added that manufacturers have a series of priorities for any forthcoming negotiation, including:
- Maintaining tariff free access to the EU market for goods and services
- Ensuring regulatory stability
- Continue to address the UK skills gap
- Further focus on an integrated domestic policy to support investment, competitiveness and export performance
Read EEF's new report Manufacturing our Future: What next for Britain and the EU?